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  John Wurster
Pastor/Head of Staff

  John grew up in Wichita Falls, Texas.
He received the Bachelor of Arts summa cum laude from Trinity University, where he was inducted into Phi Beta Kappa; the Master of Divinity from Princeton Theological Seminary; and the Doctor of Ministry from Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary. In 2019 he received an honorary Doctor of Divinity from Austin College.

John has authored two books published by CSS Press: What If What They Say Is True is a collection of sermons on the prophets; Ordinary Words, Extraordinary Deeds is a reflection on preaching the miracles of Jesus. John has contributed worship materials and essays to Call to Worship, the journal published by the Office of Theology and Worship of the Presbyterian Church (USA). He has also written essays for the multi-volume Connections biblical commentary series
John serves on the Board of Interfaith Ministries of Greater Houston and the Board of the Presbyterian Outlook Foundation, which publishes the Presbyterian Outlook magazine. He is a member of the Presbyterian Association of Musicians and has been involved with PAM conferences as a co-director and preacher. John has also served as an adjunct faculty member in homiletics at Austin Seminary. John is a former Trustee of the Presbyterian Pan American School in Kingsville, Texas and a former Trustee of Schreiner University in Kerrville

John is married to Deborah Burks, formerly Associate Professor of English at The Ohio State University.
  John Wurster has been Pastor of St. Philip since
March 2012. He most recently served as Pastor
at First Presbyterian Church in Kerrville, Texas.
He has also served Presbyterian churches in Ohio
and Pennsylvania
  Keatan King
Associate Pastor keatan@saintphilip.net
Keatan graduated summa cum laude from Austin College with a Bachelor of Arts in Spanish and Cultural Anthropology. She was inducted into Phi Beta Kappa while at Austin College. She earned a Master of Divinity from Louisville Presbyterian Seminary, where she received the Field Education Award.

Her ministry at St. Philip includes pastoral care, preaching, leading worship, and teaching. Keatan has a special focus on ministry with youth and young adults, as she seeks to accompany young people as they experience the transformative love of Jesus Christ in their lives.
She is married to Rev. Dr. Nathan Carlin,
who teaches at McGovern Medical School, and together they delight in raising their 2 daughters. They enjoy cooking (especially barbeque), walks in Montrose, and traveling as a family.
  Keatan King has served as Associate Pastor at
St. Philip Church since 2013. She is a native of Austin, Texas and a life-long Presbyterian. Keatan serves as
a Trustee of the Board of Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary.
  Omar Rouchon
Associate Pastor omar@saintphilip.net

Omar studied political science as an undergraduate, and spent five years teaching math and science before answering a call to ministry – a call he first experienced as a teenager. Deeply interested in an array of diversity and multi-faith engagement, Omar pursued his theological studies at Harvard Divinity School.

Omar holds a B.A. from Yale and a M.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction from the University
of Houston. In 2015, he received the Master of Divinity from Harvard and began serving
at St. Philip.

Education and spiritual formation are two of Omar’s greatest interests and he is grateful to be in ministry with the children and families of the St. Philip community. Omar strives to make the love of God known to all of God’s children of all ages, and help support the development of inquisitive, thoughtful, and compassionate disciples.  
  Omar Rouchon is originally from Rochester, New York, but first called Houston home from 2007-2012,
when he taught fifth grade through Teach For America. During that time Omar was a member of
St. Philip and served on the Session.
  Justin Langham
Music Director

As a performer, Justin maintains an active schedule as a freelance musician in the greater Houston area, and as a member of the internationally renowned trumpet and organ duo, Deux Voix (“two voices''), with whom he has given over 300 performances in some of
the world's most magnificent cathedrals and concert halls. Justin is also an award-winning composer and a devoted educator. In-demand as alecturer and clinician, Justin also maintains an active private teaching studio at his home in the Museum District, where he enjoys spending time with his partner, pianist Andreea Muţ, and their Great Pyrenees Risa.


Originally from Mobile, Alabama, he earned a double Bachelor of Music in performance and composition from the University of Alabama, followed by his Master's and Doctor of Musical Arts degrees from the University of Houston.

  Justin Langham, joined the St. Philip as Music Director in February 2024. Justin enjoys a multi-faceted career as a conductor, composer, performer, and educator, and is passionate about communicating and inspiring people through music. He is thrilled to be a part of the St. Philip community, where music is such an integral part of spiritual life.
  Matthew Dirst

Matthew was closely involved in the commissioning of the Fritts organ and Phillips harpsichord and is immensely grateful to serve in a church where music is so highly valued.

The first American to win major international prizes in both organ and harpsichord, Matthew is also Professor of Music at the Moores School of Music, University of Houston, where he teaches courses in music history and performance practice, and Artistic Director of the Grammy-nominated early music ensemble Ars Lyrica Houston.

His degrees include a PhD in musicology
from Stanford University and degrees in
organ and sacred music from the University
of Illinois and Southern Methodist University.
A Fulbright scholar to France, he received
the coveted prix de virtuosité in both organ and harpsichord.

The author of numerous articles on the
music of Bach and its reception, Matthew
is the author of Engaging Bach: The Keyboard Legacy from Marpurg to Mendelssohn
(Cambridge University Press, 2012). 
  Organist Matthew Dirst, who joined the St. Philip music staff in 1997, plays the 11 am Sunday service, accompanies the St. Philip Choir, and has served
St. Philip in numerous other capacities over the years, including three periods as interim choirmaster.
Church Office
  Lorrie Castle
Office Manager

Lorrie Castle, our office manager, comes from
a non-profit background in event management.


She holds a Bachelor of Arts and Science degree in General Business from Bowling Green State University, Bowling Green, Ohio.  

She and her husband David, a CPA and
a member of St. Philip, were married in this church in January, 2012.  

They enjoy spontaneous dates, sporting events, theatre, music, entertaining, and traveling.  Both of their families reside in other states--Lorrie's in Ohio, and David's in New York.  

Lorrie volunteers in the Arts and Crafts Studio here at St. Philip; her hobbies include scrapbooking, crafting, and flower gardening.

  Diana Weiss
Interim Art Director

Diana Weiss joined the staff as interim in 2023 and manages St. Philip’s in-house design department. She maintains the church website, social media and communication materials.


Diana holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Communication Design from Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, NY. 

She previously worked with a Baptist church, helping with their print, graphics, websites, and social media needs. Diana joined St. Philips as a member in 2018 and is happy to find a place on staff at the end of 2023. Her goal is to find artistic solutions that capture the unique qualities that make St. Philip a special place. She enjoys computer graphics, watercolor, and acrylic painting.

Diana’s other interests include handbells, choir, swing dancing, playing board games, and volunteering where she can.

  Denise Ferrell

Denise Ferrell joined St. Philip after the 2010 merger with Central Presbyterian Church, where she previously served as Central’s bookkeeper for 13 years.


Denise handles the bookkeeping functions for the church. She is a valued part of our administrative team, faithfully tending to all financial matters.

She provides support to the committees, our congregation and staff. Denise is also available for consultation about pledges and other matters via her email.

Denise has a passion for the cultural arts, as she enjoys attending the ballet, opera, the theatre and museum district.

Property & Facilities
  Wilbert Parada
Facilities Manager
  Dimas Parada
    Denise Sanchez
    Gabriela Rodarte
  Infants & children through 4 years
  are invited to our Nursery, well-staffed by professional childcare providers. Please find
our Nursery in Room 106 of the Education
Building along the Sunday School Classroom
hallway on the first floor. An usher or a
greeter will be happy to direct you there.

Nursery & Preschool:

8:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. on Sundays

St. Philip is a member of the Presbyterian Church - USA
4807 San Felipe Street, Houston, TX 77056 - Ph. (713) 622-4807